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Program helps Veterans find sense of self

Trenia Pevia, US Army Reserve Veteran
Trenia Pevia, Army Reserve Veteran, smiles as she discusses the care she receives at the Hope Recovery Center at VA Fayetteville Coastal Health Care System.

One of Fayetteville VA Coastal Health Care System’s newest programs is having success in helping improve the lives of Veterans.

Hope Recovery Center is recovery-oriented, which means that the focus is on helping Veterans to develop skills to feel better, be successful, and have meaningful relationships. Since 2020, 83 percent of its participants successfully completed the program.

“What we do is Veteran-centric and goal driven, so we allow the Veteran to dictate for themselves the life they want to live,” said Crystall Matthews-Wells, PhD, Psychology Program Manager. “We help articulate those goals and break them down into objectives. And whatever that is, is our starting point.”

Trenia Pevia, Army Reserve Veteran, has actively participated in the program for a year. For her the program’s transparency keeps her engaged. “They (coaches and other program participants) share their shortcomings with us which allowed me to open up about my struggles to them,” said Ms. Pevia. “I saw a light in my coach that I wanted for myself.”

“We want the Veterans to understand that there is life beyond the mental illness or experiences that they suffer from,” explained Bianca Johnson, social worker and coach. 

Hope Recovery Center services include social activities, hobby classes and life skills that focus on independent living and financial wellness. There are also peer led groups, individual psychotherapy vocational services, and family education. 

“I asked God for a place where I felt like I belonged, and I feel like I belong here. I am broken and I see people that have been where I am at that are no longer in that spot. So, I understand that there is more for me than just survival. I want to thrive and here I’ve found the help I’ve needed to help me do that.”

To learn more about the Hope Recovery Center visit:  Please discuss with your health care provider or behavioral health provider to register or contact the Hope Recovery Center directly at  910-488-2120 ext: 5496.